Wenger glad to have a well Danny back


Arsene Wenger says it was good for Danny Welbeck to get some minutes under his belt as he made his first appearance since last April in the 2-1 win over Preston on Saturday.

The England international has been sidelined since damaging his meniscus at Man City last season, but came on in the 83rd minute as the Gunners sought a winner.

Although it was Olivier Giroud who got the late goal, Welbeck almost added some gloss to the scoreline with a stinging drive that was tipped over by the keeper.

Speaking afterwards, the manager said, “He has been out for such a long time, that just for him to get 15 minutes was great.

“I think I had a hesitation. Had we not come back early I would perhaps have brought him on earlier.

“He thought he had 20 minutes in his legs and in the end he nearly scored, so that’s good.”

He’s likely to be eased back into action over the coming weeks, but once fit will certainly be pushing for a first team place.

Read today’s Arseblog on the FA Cup win and hero Olivier Giroud


  1. Welbeck is everything our style of play needs. And i honestly think if he stays fit for a whole year he can score 20+ goals. He is fast, can shoot from outside the box, has power header, has physical presence. Lets just hope he gets to his 100% fitness in next 7 days and plays important role in rest of this season. COYG

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  2. With Welbz back and Perez in form, I can see the logic of switching back to a mobile front 3 with Alexis up top. But you’ve got to feel sorry for Olivier – he’s currently got the best goals to minutes ratio in the league by some distance, I’d be gutted to dropped if I was him:


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    • we have so much attacking options right now, the possibilities are endless. as striker we have giroud , sanchez , welbeck and maybe perez. as wingers there are so many im not goiing to name each and every one.

      personally i would prefer sanchez to be played as striker. when he was our striker along with walcot on right wing we had such a stunning attacking we almost blitzed some teams including chelsea. we got the best out of sanchez when he was playing as a striker and to play him in left is to reduce his effectiveness.
      that should be our default team against bigger oppositions and maybe we can use giroud agianst teams that sit deep

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    • I find it stupid to bench your current best player. He has absolutely smashed his way into the team. He gets dropped now, he will lose every ounce of confidence or self belief he has. If he is one of the most effective in Europe at the moment.

      Our team has played very very well in the past with him and Sanchez in the team. Better to have them both on fire than just one. He can be very effective to bounce things off of on the front line with mobile players around him. A good way of breaking down a packed defensive 6. Look at his assists for Perez, Wilshere, gibbs, and podolski.

      Stick by the lad, he is saving our blushes over and over the last couple of weeks.

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    • We should help him keep that. His and the team’s current performances have only strengthened the argument he is best used aa a super sub. Start with Sanchez up top with any two of Lucas, Walcott, Ox, Iwobi, Welbz starting and Giroud coming on for at least the last 30 mins.

      Agree he needs to be consistently playing but not consistently starting.

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    • I would really like to see Alexis in behind Giroud. Ozil, as good as he is and can be, if he’s not putting the graft in, he shouldn’t be starting. It sets a shit example for the players on a third of his wage that you don’t need to work hard without the ball.

      Hopefully that would be the kick up the arse he’s needed of late or maybe he’s just been in need of a rest, either way, we won’t win anything unless something changes in our work ethic, coasting through games until we’re behind.

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  3. If they only thought he had 20 in him he’ll obviously need some game time with the 23’s and bench starts for a bit, but it was great to get a cameo reminder with a little footwork flurry or two and a clean strike on the ball.

    He seems (working mostly from memory so humor me) to have more sideline, corner, and end line (width) play than most of the wide attackers we normally play, which is a huge bonus. The confidence and ability to 1v1 from the sidelines and corner adds that much more to our wide play, with most of our play cutting in earlier.

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  4. Good timing considering our current injuries but I wonder how he fits in. With Ozil due to come back and Giroud potentially undroppable in this form that leaves us with Welbeck, Iwobi, Perez, Ox and Sanchez as our current wide options (and what the hell has happened to Theo?!). The last couple of weeks haven’t been great but you can’t say we lack strength in depth

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  5. Love wellbeck having him and Sanchez in the forward line will be great wont let defenders settle we have good forwards ..Walcott..perez..giroud..wellbeck..ozil lots of goals there my preferred front 4 … Sanchez
    Wellbeck ozil. Walcott
    Bringing on giroud and perez if needed

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    • Id probably have perez on. Feel like he is mpre of a fighter than walcott. I know theo has improved but I just cant trust him every game. Perez will work harder, and has shown some sweet finishing. Theo has had ten years to nail a place down. Give perez a shot.

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  6. Off topic, but apparently a £55m offer confirmed, not accepted, by Torino technical director (or whatever term is in English) for Andrea Belotti. Confirmed tho?! From a Dutch news site

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  7. Wasn’t thrilled when we signed him (specially to replace Poldi) and altho i still miss the dangerous edge poldi gave us (his goals), i have to say, i’m glad now we have him. He makes up for his lack of goals by being such a hardworker fella and deeply miss the guy

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  8. Off topic, but I have just read the Chel$ki have recalled Ake from a season-long loan at Bournemouth. I was under the impression that there were new rules in place that a season-long loan absolutely could not be terminated, for any reason. What’s going on here? And if Chel$ki can do that, then can we not bring back Jack Wilshere to fill in for Saint Santi?

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  9. We are stocked for options up top now to pry open different defenses.

    There are no plan Bs just different tools.

    We can play Alexis up top if mobility is paramount.

    We can play Giroud with no detriment to pace or Alexis.

    Giroud seems to be working up a telepathic partnership with Lucas who makes great runs and the pair can be deployed to add beef in the box in congestion.

    We now also have Welbeck working back in and you can see the direct threat he is. He will take a shot without hesitation has a bit of both Giroud and Alexis’s qualities.

    There is Ozil, Ramsey, Iwobi and Granit who can assists goals so we have good potential to start scoring in the high numbers again.

    Its the defense and midfield which is a slight worry.

    I think the central defensive pairing will stabilise with of course Mustafi/Koscielny as first choice but we also have the improving Gabriel, the still very solid Metersecker and young Holding.

    The full back positions are a slight concern because they add the width for us in many of the games where the wingers tend to cut in to add numbers around GIroud or Alexis.

    at Lback, Monreal’s alternate GIbbs continues to be injury prone.

    at Rback Bellerin is still streaks ahead of other options. Debuchy is likely gone and Jenkinson clearly is more limited than many think he is. Maitland Niles is still not quite there yet. I think our best bet in this position (until we can assess Chambers on return from loan at end of season) is maybe Gabriel.

    The position which is most at risk at the moment is central midfield.

    With Santi out, the limited Elneny away, Coquelin nursing his hamstrings, we are reliant on Granit to hold things together.

    He needs to keep his discipline physicality-wise around the box but he has been otherwise excellent particularly with the passing he provides from deep for the team. He has 3 assists and adds something extra to being a defensive shield.

    I think Ramsey is OK next to Granit but his instincts is to attack the box. Personally, I feel Ramsey is better further up but he should be able to hold with Granit considering he did a decent job with the aging Flamini last season during a difficult period when we were shorn of our best assets (we beat City and Olympiakos in high pressure stakes with the pair)

    But I think the other option is to consider maybe Iwobi as well in the position slightly deeper linking with Ozil further up. He has the close control skills to carry the ball from deep, the physicality and the acuity to pick passes through the lines.

    We need to find a good balance till some of the other assets return. If we can solidify our defending again and keep the engine room ticking, there is no doubt we have the assets ahead to find goals.

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